Philosophy of Medicine provides a fresh and comprehensive treatment of the topic. It offers a novel theory of the nature of medicine, and proposes a new attitude to medicine, aimed at improving the quality of debates between medical traditions and facilitating medicine's decolonization.
If one had to identify the biggest change within the philosophical tradition in the 21st century, it would certainly be the rapid rise of experimental philosophy to address differences in intuitions about concepts. Yet, it is within the philosophy of medicine that one particular conceptual debate has overshadowed all others: the long-standing dispute between so-called ‘naturalists’ and ‘normativists’ about the concepts of health and disease. It is, therefore, surprising that the philosophy of medicine has, so (...) far, not drawn on the tools of XPhi. I shall use this opportunity to defend and advocate the use of empirical methods to inform and advance this and other debates within the philosophy of medicine. (shrink)
What the philosophy of medicine is -- Philosophy of medicine: should it be teleologically or socially construed? -- The internal morality of clinical medicine: a paradigm for the ethics of the helping and healing professions -- Humanistic basis of professional ethics -- The commodification of medical and health care: the moral consequences of a paradigm shift from a professional to a market ethic -- Medicine today: its identity, its role, and the role of physicians (...) -- From medical ethics to a moral philosophy of the professions -- Moral choice, the good of the patient, and the patient's good -- The four principles and the doctor-patient relationship: the need for a better linkage -- Patient and physician autonomy: conflicting rights and obligations in the physician-patient relationship -- Character, virtue, and self-interest in the ethics of the professions -- Toward a virtue-based normative ethics for the health professions -- The physician's conscience, conscience clauses, and religious belief: a Catholic perspective -- The most humane of the sciences, the most scientific of the humanities -- The humanities in medical education: entering the post-evangelical era -- Agape and ethics: some reflections on medical morals from a catholic christian perspective -- Bioethics at century's turn: can normative ethics be retrieved? -- Hippocratic tradition -- Toward an expanded medical ethics: the Hippocratic ethic revisited -- Medical ethics: entering the post-Hippocratic era. (shrink)
Medical practice is practiced morality, and clinical research belongs to normative ethics. The present book elucidates and advances this thesis by: 1. analyzing the structure of medical language, knowledge, and theories; 2. inquiring into the foundations of the clinical encounter; 3. introducing the logic and methodology of clinical decision-making, including artificial intelligence in medicine; 4. suggesting comprehensive theories of organism, life, and psyche; of health, illness, and disease; of etiology, diagnosis, prognosis, prevention, and therapy; and 5. investigating the moral (...) and metaphysical issues central to medical practice and research. Many systems of (classical, modal, non-classical, probability, and fuzzy) logic are introduced and applied. Fuzzy medical deontics, fuzzy medical ontology, fuzzy medical concept formation, fuzzy medical decision-making and biomedicine and many other techniques of fuzzification in medicine are introduced for the first time. -/- . (shrink)
The article offers an approach to inquiry about, the foundation of medical ethics by addressing three areas of conceptual presupposition basic to medical ethical theory. First, medical ethics must presuppose a view about the nature of medicine. it is argued that the view required by a cogent medical morality entails that medicine be seen both as a healing relationship and as a practical art. Three ways in which medicine inherently involves values and valuation are presented as important, (...) i.e., in being aimed at the good of health, in being a cognitive art evaluating towards that good, and as a manifestation of a virtuous disposition concerning that good. Finally, a value ontology drawn from these considerations is seen as necessarily underlying medical ethics. A set of three such basic values are promoted as crucial: the value of health; the value of the individual patient; and the value of altruism that mediates the class of potential patients. (shrink)
_The_ _Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Medicine _is a comprehensive guide to topics in the fields of epistemology and metaphysics of medicine. It examines traditional topics such as the concept of disease, causality in medicine, the epistemology of the randomized controlled trial, the biopsychosocial model, explanation, clinical judgment and phenomenology of medicine and emerging topics, such as philosophy of epidemiology, measuring harms, the concept of disability, nursing perspectives, race and gender, the metaphysics of Chinese (...)medicine, and narrative medicine. Each of the 48 chapters is written especially for this volume and with a student audience in mind. For pedagogy and clarity, each chapter contains an extended example illustrating the ideas discussed. This text is intended for use as a reference for students in courses in philosophy of medicine and philosophy of science, and pairs well with _The_ _Routledge Companion to Bioethics_ for use in medical humanities and social science courses. (shrink)
SummaryThe congruence between medicine and philosophy which we find in the Protagoras and the Treatise on Ancient Medicine as well as the tensions symbolized in the dialectic between Eryximachus and Diotima will always be with us. The congruence and the divergence of these ancient disciplines are both important to human well-being. By opposing one another, medicine and philosophy can each balance the other's pretension to universality. By converging, they illumine some of the most important questions (...) of human existence. This essay has examined ways in which medicine and philosophy can converge in our times as philosophy and medicine, philosophy in medicine, and philosophy of medicine. The present moment in our intellectual history is particularly propitious for the nurture of the engagement of medicine and philosophy. The most fruitful form of that interaction may be in the philosophy of medicine, which is a definable discipline with a set of issues specific to it. If the obvious intellectual dangers can be avoided, those who practice medicine, those who think about it, and those who are served by it can gain deeper insight into the nature and the purpose of medicine as well as the nature of the profession and of man himself. Perhaps—positioned as it is, at the intersection of the sciences, the humanities, and technology—medicine can become “… a medium and the focus in which the problems of wisdom and science meet” (Buchanan 1938, p. 194). (shrink)
The celebration of thirty years of publication of The Journal of Medicine and Philosophy provides an opportunity to reflect on how medical ethics has evolved over that period. The reshaping of the field has occurred in no small part because of the impact of branches of philosophy other than ethics. These have included influences from Kantian theory of respect for persons, personal identity theory, philosophy of biology, linguistic analysis of the concepts of health and disease, personhood (...) theory, epistemology, and political philosophy. More critically, medicine itself has begun to be reshaped. The most fundamental restructuring of medicine is currently occurring - stemming, in part, from the application of contemporary philosophy of science to the medical field. There is no journal more central to these critical events of the past three decades than The Journal of Medicine and Philosophy. (shrink)
The purpose of this chapter is to describe what we see as several important new directions for philosophy of medicine. This recent work (i) takes existing discussions in important and promising new directions, (ii) identifies areas that have not received sufficient and deserved attention to date, and/or (iii) brings together philosophy of medicine with other areas of philosophy (including bioethics, philosophy of psychiatry, and social epistemology). To this end, the next part focuses on what (...) we call the “epistemological turn” in recent work in the philosophy of medicine; the third part addresses new developments in medical research that raise interesting questions for philosophy of medicine; the fourth part is a discussion of philosophical issues within the practice of diagnosis; the fifth part focuses on the recent developments in psychiatric classification and scientific and ethical issues therein, and the final part focuses on the objectivity of medical research. (shrink)
What kind of knowledge is medical knowledge? Can medicine be explained scientifically? Is disease a scientific concept, or do explanations of disease depend on values? What is ‘evidence-based’ medicine? Are advances in neuroscience bringing us closer to a scientific understanding of the mind? The nature of medicine raises fundamental questions about explanation, causation, knowledge and ontology – questions that are central to philosophy as well as medicine. In this book Paul R. Thompson and Ross E. (...) G. Upshur introduce the fundamental issues in philosophy of medicine for those coming to the subject for the first time. They introduce and explain the following key topics: Understanding the physician-patient relationship: the phenomenology of the medical encounter. Models and theories in biology and medicine: what role do theories play in medicine? Are they similar to scientific theories? Randomised controlled trials: can scientific experiments be replicated in clinical medicine? What are the philosophical criticisms levelled at RCTs? The concept of evidence in medical research: what do we mean by ‘Evidence-based medicine?’ Should all medicine be based on evidence? Causation in medicine What do advances in neuroscience reveal about the relationship between mind and body? Defining health and disease: are explanations of disease objective or do they depend on values? Evolutionary medicine: what is the role of evolutionary biology in understanding medicine? Is it relevant? Extensive use of empirical examples and case studies is made throughout the book. These include debates about smoking and cancer, the use of placebos in randomised controlled trials and controversies about research into the causes of HIV and autism. This is an indispendable introduction to those teaching philosophy of medicine and philosophy of science. (shrink)
This paper is a criticalexamination of the development of thephilosophy of medicine as a discipline. Ithighlights two major themes in the contemporarydebate about the philosophy of medicine: thescope of the discipline and the relation of thediscipline to its cognate disciplines. A broadview of the philosophy of medicine is defendedand the philosophy of medicine is seen as aphilosophical sub-discipline. These viewsdepend in important ways on three factors: ageneral metaphysical world view, particularunderstandings of the cognate (...) disciplines, andthe perspective from which one asks thequestions about the nature of the discipline. It is proposed that the future of thephilosophy of medicine may follow thephilosophy of science in that philosophical,sociological and historical studies may combinein a mutually enriching way to form ‘‘medicinestudies.’‘. (shrink)
A less analytic and more wholistic approach to philosophy, described as best overall fit or seeing how things all hang together, is defended in recent works by John Rawls and Richard Rorty and can usefully be applied to problems in philosophy of medicine. Looking at sickness and its impact upon the person as a central problem for philosophy of medicine, this approach discourages a search for necessary and sufficient conditions for being sick, and instead encourages (...) a listing of true and interesting observations about sickness which reflect the convergence of a number of different viewpoints. Among the relevant viewpoints are other humanities disciplines besides philosophy and the social sciences. Literature, in particular, provides insights into the meaning and the uniqueness of episodes of sickness in a way that philosophers may otherwise fail to grasp. (shrink)
Some problems that arise in the account given by Thomasma and Pellegrino  of the foundations of medical ethics in a philosophy of medicine are addressed, in particular questions of a conceptual character about treating therelatum of medicine as health. Which concept of health is appropriate and which will bear the burden of the position thomasma and Pellegrino advance? It is argued that the proper relationship of medicine is one between a healer and developing embodied minds. (...) As a consequence, the project of providing a univocal account of the nature of medicine fails. Instead, pluralism infects philosophy and medicine, resulting in different philosophies of medicine. From these philosophies of medicine will follow not a single medical ethics but a variety. (shrink)
Papers presented at a symposium on philosophy and medicine at the Institute for the Medical Humanities at the University of Texas Medical Branch in 1974 were published in the inaugural volume of this series.
This is the first wide-ranging, multi-authored handbook in the field of philosophy of medicine, covering the underlying conceptual issues of many important social, political and ethical issues in health care. It introduces and develops over 70 topics, concepts, and issues in the field. It is written by distinguished specialists from multiple disciplines, including philosophy, health sciences, nursing, sociology, political theory, and medicine. Many difficult social and ethical issues in health care are based on conceptual problems, most (...) prominently on the definitions of health and disease, or on epistemological issues regarding causality or diagnosis. Philosophy is the discipline that deals with such conceptual, metaphysical, epistemological, methodological, and axiological matters. This handbook covers all the central concepts in medicine, such as ageing, death, disease, mental disorder, and well-being. It is an invaluable source for laypeople, academics with an interest in medicine, and health care specialists who want be informed and up to date with the relevant discussions. The text also advances these debates and will set the agenda for years to come. (shrink)
Philosophy of medicine: between clinical trials and mechanisms Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11016-011-9630-5 Authors Federica Russo, Philosophy-SECL, University of Kent, Canterbury, CT2 7NF UK Journal Metascience Online ISSN 1467-9981 Print ISSN 0815-0796.
In this book the author explores the shifting philosophical boundaries of modern medical knowledge and practice occasioned by the crisis of quality-of-care, especially in terms of the various humanistic adjustments to the biomedical model.
A definitive and authoritative guide to a vibrant and growing discipline in current philosophy, The Bloomsbury Companion to Contemporary Philosophy of Medicine presents an overview of the issues facing contemporary philosophy of medicine, the research methods required to understand them and a trajectory for the discipline's future. -/- Written by world leaders in the discipline, this companion addresses the ontological, epistemic, and methodological challenges facing philosophers of medicine today, from the debate between evidence-based and (...) person-centered medicine, medical humanism, and gender medicine, to traditional issues such as disease, health, and clinical reasoning and decision-making. Practical and forward-looking, it also includes a detailed guide to research sources, a glossary of key terms, and an annotated bibliography, as well as an introductory survey of research methods and discussion of new research directions emerging in response to the rapid changes in modern medicine. -/- “Philosophy needs medicine', Hillel Braude argues, 'to become more relevant'. By showing how modern medicine provides philosophers with a rich source of material for investigating issues facing contemporary society, The Bloomsbury Companion to Contemporary Philosophy of Medicine introduces the opportunities medicine offers philosophers together with the resources and skills required to contribute to contemporary debates and discussions. (shrink)
The philosophy of evidence-based medicine -- What is EBM? -- What is good evidence for a clinical decision? -- Ruling out plausible rival hypotheses and confounding factors : a method -- Resolving the paradox of effectiveness : when do observational studies offer the same degree of evidential support as randomized trials? -- Questioning double blinding as a universal methodological virtue of clinical trials : resolving the Philip's paradox -- Placebo controls : problematic and misleading baseline measures of effectiveness (...) -- Questioning the methodological superiority of "placebo" over "active" controlled trials -- Examining the paradox that traditional roles for mechanistic reasoning and expert -- Judgment have been up-ended by EBM -- A qualified defence of the EBM stance on mechanistic reasoning -- Knowledge that versus knowledge how : situating the EBM position on expert clinical judgment -- Moving EBM forward. (shrink)
In this commentary on the article by Arthur L. Caplan  the philosophy of medicine is viewed from a medical perspective. Philosophical studies have a long tradition in medicine, especially during periods of paradigmatic unrest, and they serve the same goal as other medical activities: the prevention and treatment of disease. The medical profession needs the help of professional philosophers in much the same way as it needs the cooperation of basic scientists. Philosophy of medicine (...) may not deserve the status of a philosophical subspecialty or field, but it so closely linked to the main trends of contemporary medical thinking that it must be regarded as an emerging (or reemerging) medical subdiscipline. (shrink)
In 2012, the symposium "Christopher Boorse and the Philosophy of Medicine" was held at the University of Hamburg. The initial ideas presented at this event, which celebrated Chris's contribution to the development of what is now a vibrant area of research, especially to the theory of disease, form the core of the papers published in this issue. Similarly to what Robert Nozick once said about John Rawls's work, it can be demanded that philosophers of medicine must now (...) either work within Boorse's theory or explain why not. It is simply the main contender in the so-called naturalist camp of contributions to the theory of disease. All of the papers in this issue address his approach in some respect, and all of them are friendly toward his theory up to a point. In this brief introduction, I try to extract common threads. In doing so, I focus on three issues that have the capacity to determine future debates. The first is the methodology of developing a theory of disease, especially what conceptual analysis amounts to and what it may achieve. The second is the issue of value-ladenness of the concepts of health and disease, a topic that has been at the forefront of the philosophical debate, but which -- to my mind -- has often been misunderstood. The third issue is the problem of the unity of medical terminology. We can ask whether there is only one core medical concept, be it "disease," "pathology," "disorder," "malady," or something else. Alternatively, we might propose different concepts for different purposes. (shrink)
There has been a great deal of discussion, in this journal and others, about obstacles hindering the evolution of the philosophy of medicine. Such discussions presuppose that there is widespread agreement about what it is that constitutes the philosophy of medicine.Despite the fact that there is, and has been for decades, a great deal of literature, teaching and professional activity carried out explicitly in the name of the philosophy of medicine, this is not enough (...) to establish that consensus exists as to the definition of the field. And even if consensus can be obtained as to what constitutes the philosophy of medicine, this does not mean that it exists as a field. (shrink)
After considering two of Pellegrino’s papers that address the relation between philosophy of medicine and medical ethics, I identify several overarching problems in his account that revolve around his self-described essentialism and the lack of a systematic attempt to relate clinical medicine to biomedicine and public health. I address these from the critical realist position of Bernard Lonergan, who grounds both metaphysics and ethics on the normative structure of human inquiry and seeks to understand historical development, such (...) as we are witnessing in health science and health care, in terms of the dynamic structure of the human good. I conclude that Lonergan’s generalized empirical method and hierarchical account of world order provide a potentially dynamic framework on which to build a more comprehensive philosophy of medicine than one whose foundations rest primarily on a phenomenology of the clinical encounter and the telos of medicine. (shrink)
This is a review of the literature in the philosophy of medicine published in China from 1930 to 1980. The topics dealt with include the relationship between medicine and philosophy, the basic concepts of medicine, etiology and causality, the bearing of psychology on physiology and pathology, epistemology in diagnostics, methodology of medical sciences, philosophical and methological problems in traditional Chinese medicine, philosophical problems in health policy, and medical ethics.
In the late 1720s and early 1730s, Christian Wolff writes a series of short treatises on general medical concepts such as health, disease, cause of disease, symptom, etc. The paper makes the claim that these texts should be considered as a pioneering attempt at developing a systematic philosophy of medicine based on metaphysical and epistemological investigations on medical concepts, doctrines, and practices. The main focus is on Wolff’s analysis of the concepts of health and disease in functional terms (...) and its connection to his teleological characterization of both natural and artificial machines. This also explains Wolff’s use of the normatively loaded concepts of fitness and nature to clarify the distinction between health as good functioning and disease as dysfunction. The conclusion is that Wolff’s mechanist view of living bodies and his realism about biological functions are just one side of the coin; the other is his commitment to a normative view of the human body’s nature and purposes. (shrink)
Germund Hesslow has argued that concepts of health and disease serve no important scientific, clinical, or ethical function. However, this conclusion depends upon the particular concept of disease he espouses; namely, on Boorse's functional notion. The fact/value split embodied in the functional notion of disease leads to a sharp split between the science of medicine and bioethics, making the philosophy of medicine irrelevant for both. By placing this disease concept in the broader context of medical history, I (...) shall show that it does capture an essential part of modern medical ideology. However, it is also a self-contradictory notion. By making explicit the value desiderata of medical nosologies, a reconfiguration of the relation between medicine, bioethics, and the philosophy of medicine is initiated. This, in turn, will involve a recovery of the caring dimensions of medicine, and thus a more humane practice. (shrink)
Obviously medicine should be evidence-based. The issues lie in the details: what exactly counts as evidence? Do certain kinds of evidence carry more weight than others? And how exactly should medicine be based on evidence? When it comes to these details, the evidence-based medicine movement has got itself into a mess – or so it will be argued. In order to start to resolve this mess, we need to go 'back to basics'; and that means turning to (...) the philosophy of science. The theory of evidence, or rather the logic of the interrelations between theory and evidence, has always been central to the philosophy of science – sometimes under the alias of the 'theory of confirmation'. When taken together with a little philosophical commonsense, this logic can help us move towards a position on evidence in medicine that is more sophisticated and defensible than anything that EBM has been able so far to supply. (shrink)
Philosophy of medicine, narrowly defined as ontology and epistemology of medicine, is a well developed research field, yet education in this field is less well developed. The aim of this paper is to present an educational development in philosophy of medicine—an introductory course in philosophy of medicine. Central features of the course are described. Participants (medical undergraduate students) scored high on average. The conclusion is that further such educational ventures in philosophy of (...)medicine should be developed and implemented. (shrink)
The first part of a symposium devoted to Alex Broadbent's essay titled ‘Prediction, Understanding and Medicine’, this article notes the under-development of a variety of issues in the philosophy of medicine that transcend bioethics and the long-standing debates about the nature of health/illness and of evidence-based medicine. It also indicates the importance of drawing on non-Western, and particularly African, traditions in addressing these largely metaphysical and epistemological matters.
Two crucial topics in the philosophy of medicine are the philosophy of nature and philosophical anthropology. In this essay I engage the philosophy of nature by exploring Anne Fagot-Largeault's study of norms in nature as a way of articulating a Confucian philosophy of medicine. I defend the Confucian position as a moderate naturalism.
On 27 September 2013, the Centre for the Humanities and Health (CHH) at King's College London hosted a 1-day workshop on ‘Medical knowledge, Medical Duties’. This workshop was the fifth in a series of five workshops whose aim is to provide a new model for high-quality, open interdisciplinary engagement between medical professionals and philosophers. This report identifies the key points of discussion raised throughout the day and the methodology employed.
The social ethics of medicine is the study and ethical analysis of social structures which impact on the provision of health care by physicians. There are many such social structures. Not all these structures are responsive to the influence of physicians as health professionals. But some social structures which impact on health care are prompted by or supported by important preconceptions of medical practice. In this article, three such elements of the philosophy of medicine are examined in (...) terms of the negative impact on health care of the social structures to which they contribute. The responsibilities of the medical profession and of individual physicians to work to change these social structures are then examined in the light of a theory of profession. (shrink)